I work in construction. When I look at the general construction (so not HVAC, plumbing, electricians, etc., but bricklayers, etc), the large majority are people from Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Czech Republic, etc. However, they're not immigrants. They work here for a few weeks at a time, then go home for a while, then come back to work for another long stretch.
Meanwhile, unemployment amongst immigrants is extremely high. Our welfare system simply doesn't encourage people enough to start working.
You are right though, generally speaking, EU immigrants do move for work reasons. And that's a good thing. That's whole point of the EU, that people should be able to move freely to regions where there are more work opportunities. However, when it comes to receiving welfare, there should be rules in place that someone is only eligible to receive welfare after working a certain amount of time (like it is in Australia, for example). I don't see how that's discriminatory.
At one of the nursing homes we've built, they've recently employed several Spanish and Portuguese nurses. It's amazing how quickly these nurses managed to learn the language (or the basis at least, enough to have a conversation). These nurses are obviously very intelligent and want to work and move forward. It's distressing to think that such highly qualified people were unable to find work in Spain and Portugal.
Yeah, they're working in that way to avoid the local companies to pay the taxes, all these temporary
job agencies are abusing labour law. What immigrants? Cause as far as I know, as such problems are in area of my education and interests, most of the people from EE leave their countries to work, and nearly all of them are leaving with already organised legal job. Of course there was a big problem with migration to the UK, when many people thought that it's Eldorado, and many unprepared without english basics left their countries, but things are getting better now. Also my friend who is living in Middlesborough said that he have seen many Poles (mostly them) and in his opinion it's a very hardworking nation. Luckilly there are not so many people like Londoner.
Maybe you think about non-EU members, who are not working at all, just demanding and they are abusing welfare for good twenty years. Absurds like building mosques just next to the typical european old town.
So to me - it's ok if the citizens of the EU are moving to seek jobs in different countries, we should just cut off "out-of-Europe" migration, cause because of it we'll suffer many problems - as they do not want to assimilate.
Well, do you know in what conditions polish seasonal workers live in the Netherlands? How their work time is abused? However some legal steps are taken now.
And yes, in many EE countries - nurses are graduating from the medical university (sic!) with a Master degree and with language skills (mostly english or german), cause they prefer to work for real money, not for 400 euros.
And also yes - it's sick that with two majors, with some language skills, EE can't find job for decent money in their homecountries, but that's the price they have to pay for being "sold" to Eastern Bloc.
Integration has to come from both sides. No matter what we try, as long as they insist on keeping their kids away from school, there's no way they'll ever integrate. Education is key!
I think it's a different thing for Roma people. They are free spirits. But of course you are right - the key is to assimilate, to still have your own culture, but in the same time - to know the culture of the country you're living and to accept its habits/culture, learn language of that country, something about its history.